Running Scared: Observations of a Former Republican
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"Losing my faith in humanity ... one neocon at a time."

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Are you feeling safer?

posted by Ron Beasley at 2/09/2005 11:19:00 AM


Are we safer now than before 9-11? Thanks to the regime of King George the answer is a resounding NO. Most of those who are still capable of independent thought realize that the invasion of Iraq has inflamed the Islamic world and made us less safe. In order to invade Iraq we had to leave Afghanistan before the job was finished making us less safe. Now Nicholas Kristof explains how Bush has totally screwed up the North Korea nukes situation making us, you guessed it, less safe.
[T]here are two words the Bush administration doesn't want you to think about: North Korea.

That's because the most dangerous failure of U.S. policy these days is in North Korea. President Bush has been startlingly passive as North Korea has begun churning out nuclear weapons like hot cakes.
The famous "Axis of Evil" speech may have done more to contribute to nuclear proliferation than anything else.
North Korea is particularly awkward for Mr. Bush to discuss publicly because, as best we know, it didn't make a single nuclear weapon during Bill Clinton's eight years in office (although it did begin a separate, and secret, track to produce uranium weapons; it hasn't produced any yet but may eventually). In contrast, the administration now acknowledges that North Korea extracted enough plutonium in the last two years for about half a dozen nuclear weapons.
So, do you feel safer?
But U.S. policy on North Korea for the last four years has only strengthened Mr. Kim and allowed him to expand his nuclear arsenal severalfold.

The risk is that Mr. Bush will respond to the failure of his first term's policy by adopting an even harder line in the coming months, seeking Security Council sanctions (he won't get them) and ultimately imposing some kind of naval quarantine. That would only strengthen Mr. Kim's grip on power, as well as risk a war on the Korean peninsula. A Pentagon study in the 1990's predicted that such a war could kill one million people.

In short, our mishandling of North Korea has been appalling - and it may soon get worse.
The "rapture" may be closer than we think.